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Names on a Memorial

Like all language, organized information can be persuasive. It “directs our thinking,” as biologist Stephen Jay Gould wrote about classification. Names on memorials are examples of organized information where arrangement defines a visitor’s experience. The thoughtful chronology of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial builds a space for individual remembrance. A World War I memorial does the same, but with a different arrangement strategy, reflecting the difference in the two wars. In contrast, the random arrangement proposed for the World Trade Center memorial almost derailed the project. Yet, in another context, random builds community at the Memorial Temples of Burning Man. Click here for the full article.
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Reduction or Persuading through Simplifying

Last month I introduced B J Fogg’s seven tools of persuasion as outlined in his book, Persuasive Technology: Using Computers to Change What We Think and Do. I showed how information arrangement exploits these tools with specific reference to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial (VVM). Click here for the full article.
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Seven Persuasive Tools

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial (VVM) is arguably the most powerful memorial in the world. Maya Lin’s choice of chronological order for name arrangement may be the primary element of that power. In making that choice, she engaged six of the seven persuasive tools identified by B J Fogg, in his book, Persuasive Technology: Using Computers to Change What We Think and Do. Click here for the full article.